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Body temperature regulation in hot environments

Nilsson, Jan Åke LU ; Molokwu, Mary Ngozi LU and Olsson, Ola LU (2016) In PLoS ONE 11(8).
Abstract

Organisms in hot environments will not be able to passively dissipate metabolically generated heat. Instead, they have to revert to evaporative cooling, a process that is energetically expensive and promotes excessive water loss. To alleviate these costs, birds in captivity let their body temperature increase, thereby entering a state of hyperthermia. Here we explore the use of hyperthermia in wild birds captured during the hot and dry season in central Nigeria. We found pronounced hyperthermia in several species with the highest body temperatures close to predicted lethal levels. Furthermore, birds let their body temperature increase in direct relation to ambient temperatures, increasing body temperature by 0.22°C for each degree of... (More)

Organisms in hot environments will not be able to passively dissipate metabolically generated heat. Instead, they have to revert to evaporative cooling, a process that is energetically expensive and promotes excessive water loss. To alleviate these costs, birds in captivity let their body temperature increase, thereby entering a state of hyperthermia. Here we explore the use of hyperthermia in wild birds captured during the hot and dry season in central Nigeria. We found pronounced hyperthermia in several species with the highest body temperatures close to predicted lethal levels. Furthermore, birds let their body temperature increase in direct relation to ambient temperatures, increasing body temperature by 0.22°C for each degree of increased ambient temperature. Thus to offset the costs of thermoregulation in ambient temperatures above the upper critical temperature, birds are willing to let their body temperatures increase by up to 5°C above normal temperatures. This flexibility in body temperature may be an important mechanism for birds to adjust to predicted increasing ambient temperatures in the future.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
PLoS ONE
volume
11
issue
8
publisher
Public Library of Science
external identifiers
  • scopus:84984846140
  • wos:000381768400062
ISSN
1932-6203
DOI
10.1371/journal.pone.0161481
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
32604fe3-3d9b-4e02-87c1-871f13a398aa
date added to LUP
2016-12-30 11:38:35
date last changed
2017-09-18 11:34:48
@article{32604fe3-3d9b-4e02-87c1-871f13a398aa,
  abstract     = {<p>Organisms in hot environments will not be able to passively dissipate metabolically generated heat. Instead, they have to revert to evaporative cooling, a process that is energetically expensive and promotes excessive water loss. To alleviate these costs, birds in captivity let their body temperature increase, thereby entering a state of hyperthermia. Here we explore the use of hyperthermia in wild birds captured during the hot and dry season in central Nigeria. We found pronounced hyperthermia in several species with the highest body temperatures close to predicted lethal levels. Furthermore, birds let their body temperature increase in direct relation to ambient temperatures, increasing body temperature by 0.22°C for each degree of increased ambient temperature. Thus to offset the costs of thermoregulation in ambient temperatures above the upper critical temperature, birds are willing to let their body temperatures increase by up to 5°C above normal temperatures. This flexibility in body temperature may be an important mechanism for birds to adjust to predicted increasing ambient temperatures in the future.</p>},
  articleno    = {e0161481},
  author       = {Nilsson, Jan Åke and Molokwu, Mary Ngozi and Olsson, Ola},
  issn         = {1932-6203},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {08},
  number       = {8},
  publisher    = {Public Library of Science},
  series       = {PLoS ONE},
  title        = {Body temperature regulation in hot environments},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0161481},
  volume       = {11},
  year         = {2016},
}